Heat vs Renegades
  • Brisbane Heat are now in last place in the BBL
  • Renegades are now 1 from 2 and are in 5th place
  • The two teams have a good rivalry, with each team winning 2 of the last 4 games between them

Venue Carrara (Gold Coast)
Time 7.15 PM
Weather Partly cloudy with a slight (30%) chance of rain, light southeasterly winds. Temperature 20-26

This should be an interesting game because the Renegades wouldn’t know much about playing at the Gold Coast, but the Heat are at the bottom of the ladder. But as we know about the BBL, things change and they change all the time. Brisbane Heat have shown glimpses of form in their two defeats so far, so the fans who have shown patience could well be rewarded in this game. The Gold Coast fans don’t get to see many top level games and they’ll no doubt help the Heat with their enthusiasm. I’d rate the home ground advantage at 10% for the Heat.

The Melbourne Renegades are now in 5th position in the BBL and you’d think they would see this game as an opportunity to collect some relatively easy points. But they have their concerns as well and their batting had a bad night on Thursday, scoring only 100 runs in total. Perhaps setting a realistic target of 150 could be a good move for them as they need to rebuild their confidence and set a target which their competitive bowling attack can realistically defend. If they win the toss I would like to see them bat first and get the weaker half of their game out of the way first.

The wide open spaces at Carrara should favour the bowler who likes to make the batter play silly shots. The conditions will be mild and should suit the batters. The pitch is a regular drop-in pitch that doesn’t see a lot of cricket played on it so it should have fair bounce and play zero tricks on the batters. The slanted yorker from wide of the crease might be a good option for the bowlers in order to contain the batters and bowl them over at the same time.

Brisbane Heat to win by 2 wickets or 20 runs.

Brisbane Heat

The Heat are off to a poor start this season but they have something of a home ground advantage because they’ll take a short drive to Carrara for this game. This is their No.2 ground and the crowds at the Gold Coast enjoy themselves – and the Brisbane Heat players usually return the favour. Chris Lynn is yet to fire this season but his 27 off 33 balls on Thursday is a sign that he could return to form in this game. Mujeeb Ur Rahman has bowled tightly this season but has picked up only 1 wicket from 2 games this season which demonstrates the fact that you still need to take at least 6 or 7 wickets in order to win a T20 game. The top order needs to improve… and more wickets from the bowlers, thank you very much.

Batting

Chris Lynn showed signs of a return to form in his last game in Perth and this could mean a fifty for him looks likely. The Renegades bowlers shouldn’t concern him too much and the 220 T20 games would’ve taught him that he will cash in sooner or later given his hitting talent. The large oval at Carrara won’t intimidate him either and his power is still highly respected by all those who have witnessed it. It would be a mistake to bowl short at him because it looks like he has been working on his hook and pull shot during the off season. Still devastating against nervous bowlers.

Sam Heazlett is starting out on what should be a long career and in his 37 games he has produced some solid efforts without grabbing too many headlines. His 34 off 17 balls on Thursday must have sent a clear signal that he is in fine form…  it might be a case of asking the fans to throw the ball back please. Against such a batter the Renegades will need bowlers who can bowl well under pressure and stick to bowling short of a length with intelligent changes of pace. Heazlett is another young batter who will start to feel he truly belongs with the Heat once he scores another fifty and he has a good opportunity to do that in this game.

Jimmy Peirson is the captain and the wicket keeper and so he has two very important jobs to do at the same time. The third part is what’s in question at the moment – his batting – and a total of 9 runs so far this season is underwhelming. A couple of good hits to the boundary will set him right and he’ll start to ease his way back to form at No.5 in the batting order. His solid average of 22 suggests it’s only a matter of time and a good idea for him would be to go out and attack from the first ball. Carrara will be the ideal venue for such an approach due to the friendly batting wicket and the supportive crowd.

Bowling

Xavier Bartlett was just a little bit expensive on Thursday with a spell of 1 for 34, but he’s a young right arm fast-medium bowler who has taken 14 wickets in his 18 games so far. He is prepared to bowl wide from the crease and use clever changes of pace that slide underneath the bat and leave the batter swinging at nothing but fresh air. All he needs is solid support from the fielders and he’ll be among the wickets. He is a good choice as a death bowler due to his level-headed approach to the game.

Cameron Gannon delivers the ball from 199 cm with his right arm fast-medium style and can create problems for the batter when he pitches the ball short. He finds the outside edge of the bat with regularity, as his average of 23 per wicket suggests. Unusually he is now 32 years of age but he has played only 28 games in the BBL and his 2 for 32 on Thursday was a solid return for all the hard work that he’s put in over the years. Long troubled by allegations of throwing, he has moved past that and now looks like a dangerous prospect to face when he’s fit.

Mark Steketee is another cast-off from the Australia A squad and if he does return for this game, then the Brisbane Heat will have yet another right arm fast medium bowler available. He has now played 53 games and at some point in his future he should achieve selection for Australia. His red ball form in the Sheffield Shield this year has been outstanding and if he can make the transition to the BBL in quick time then the batters will find themselves hitting the ball straight to the fielders, because he does bowl well to his field.

Melbourne Renegades

The middle order looked shaky and the tailenders were ordinary on Thursday, but they know they’re a lot better than that. The bowlers yet again put in another good performance but the batters will need to show better shot selection and a willingness to bat out the 20 overs. The international players are showing their worth once again with Zahir Khan and Reece Topley proving that their bowling is keeping the Renegades competitive. An interesting challenge awaits them at Carrara… they haven’t played there too often but the Heat look vulnerable at this stage of the season.

Batting

Sam Harper scored 33 off 31 on Thursday and he is a valuable player. His reliable and powerful batting is combined with his ability to hold difficult catches when he’s wicket keeping. When batting he likes to bend the knees slightly more than other batters do as the bowler approaches the wicket. His bat is held up high and he looks to scoop the ball up in the air, particularly over mid wicket (or cow corner as it’s known to the commentators). The good thing is that he has learnt to wait for the ball to come to the bat and he looks dangerous against average bowlers.

Mackenzie Harvey is a top order right-hand batter who is starting to deliver, and he’s learnt much in his 25 T20 games so far. He plays with grace and he loves to push off the back foot through the point region. The drives and pull shots are punchy but effective, and can keep the ball on the ground and acquire runs through the traditional method. Despite the fact that he’s only 21 he is regarded as a batter who makes the percentages work for him. He’s also an outstanding catcher, particularly in the gully region.

Mohammed Nabi is an all rounder from Afghanistan who doesn’t mind hitting the ball in the air and it works most of the time for him. He has a healthy strike rate of 140 per 100 balls and the ball can go a very long off his bat, particularly once he senses the bowler is a bit nervous. This makes his run scoring up and down, but the pattern with him seems to be that after a couple of quiet games he goes big. He’s capable of batting very well in the death overs and posting a quick 30 or so runs at about 2 runs per ball when things go right for him.

Bowling

Kane Richrdson picked up 4 for 32 on Thursday and his accurate yorkers are a big weapon for him, particularly when bowling at the death. The peak of his career is right now and he should be a candidate for Australia when the international white ball season comes around. His right arm fast-medium style is very common in the BBL but what is rare is his judgement of which ball to bowl to each particular batter at each stage of the game. He has a particular knack for making the batter hit the ball into the air in an uncontrolled manner.

Zahir Khan is another Afghan whose talent lies with T20 cricket. Unlike a lot of other spinners, he runs in hard to the bowling crease and whips his left arm over to produce a spinning ball which doesn’t turn very much but is very accurate. He had a solid game on Thursday night, returning figures of 2 for 33, which should boost his confidence for this game. The large oval at Carrara should provide plenty of opportunities off his bowling in the outfield.

Reece Topley is proving once again that he is a worthy international import with 3 for 32 on Thursday. This is no surprise as he’s been a consistent performer over the course of his 94 T20 games so far. His left arm fast-medium bowling is based on bowling on a good length, making the batters come through their shots far too early and thus producing a lot of outfield catches. A good idea might be to have the wicket keeper stand up to the stumps when he’s bowling when the wicket is on the slow side.

Heat vs Renegades: Market Odds

Brisbane Heat $1.84, Melbourne Renegades $1.99 with TopSport

Heat vs Renegades: Best Bet

Zahir Khan to collect the most wickets for the match: $5.75 with TopSport

Heat vs Renegades: Best Multi

Zahir Khan to collect the most wickets for the match.
Chris Lynn to hit the most sixes for the match.
Sam Heazlett to score the most runs for Brisbane Heat.

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